The world biggest companies are throwing away billions of pounds because they are not very good at sourcing and managing their telecoms services.
A report by Forrester Research for telecoms sourcing consultancy Hudson & Yorke said 80% of all telecoms sourcing projects are inefficient.
The report, which is the result of a survey of 81 multinational companies, said companies could reduce telecoms costs by 20%.
A major part of the problem is a lack of management after contracts are signed.
Harry McDermott, CEO at Hudson & Yorke, said there are often problems executing the contracts once they are singed. This, he said, is a contributor to money being wasted.
"So much effort goes into signing the contract and when it is done there is a tendency to sit back and expect everything to happen, when it actually requires strong hands-on management."
There is also a lack of investment in managing telecoms strategies. The report said CIOs are spending up to 20% of IT budgets on telecom services but commit well under one fifth of team time to managing their telecom strategy, sourcing and governance.
McDermott said, "CIOs are increasingly expected by their CEOs and CFOs to deliver more services and improved quality at less cost. There is clearly a significant discrepancy between what large organisations hope to achieve with a major telecoms sourcing project and the reality of what is currently being delivered with limited experience and resources.
"As organisations plan their IT projects for 2010 and beyond, CIOs need to change the way they approach, plan and source their telecoms in a disciplined and methodical way - looking beyond their existing sourcing models - whilst dedicating the right skills and adequate time to projects. With attention to detail and best practice, the results will follow."
Hudson & Yorke recommended that CIOs adopt four key best practices when sourcing telecoms services: make planning an imperative, put more resources into it, multisource and use external specialists.